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littlefrog

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57 awards, average natural spread 9.1 cm and 4 flowers.

Now... that is over... 15 years? In the last 6 years, there have been no awards (of about 6) with a natural spread less than 11cm. Two FCCs in there ('Jersey' - EYOF, and 'Flashpoint' from HP Norton), both to die for which had spreads of 11.6 and 12.8 cm.

Size isn't everything (it is very little in my opinion). I've actually had plants awarded because they were smaller (and better colored, that didn't hurt). Your flower count is low, that is going to hurt you more than anything else, in fact I'd say it is a fatal flaw for this hybrid. Color is very good, but I'd have to see pictures of the FCCs to remind myself (I seem to recall they were red enough to make your eyes bleed). Form is quite good.

It isn't at my table, and there would be at least two other judges with opinions, but I would pass on this particular plant. However... If you grow it on for another year or two it will have more flowers and probably better size. It certainly has all the features of a plant I would purchase with the expectation of growing it into an excellent show plant - you will win trophies with this one when it grows up. And maybe even AOS awards. But not this year.

Of course that is just my opinion. A beautiful slipper with excellent potential.
 

NYEric

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littlefrog said:
Size isn't everything (it is very little in my opinion).
LOL! :rollhappy:

littlefrog said:
Your flower count is low, that is going to hurt you more than anything else, in fact I'd say it is a fatal flaw for this hybrid.
Like I said.

littlefrog said:
Color is very good, but I'd have to see pictures of the FCCs to remind myself (I seem to recall they were red enough to make your eyes bleed).
It's funny, last year I spotted and guided Paph and Phrags judging at the GNYOS show and there was the deepest red besseae hybrid I ever saw and it didn't even get entered as it only had one flower. Unfortunately, the photo was on my stolen Motorala RAZR so...

littlefrog said:
Form is quite good.
This is quite true, the shape is standard setting.

littlefrog said:
Of course that is just my opinion. A beautiful slipper with excellent potential.
I concur, good job. :)
 

e-spice

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I think the flower has absolutely remarkable form. The color is just okay in the photo. Gilda said the color is better in person so that's what I was basing my opinion on. Size is very good also. I think if it is not award quality now the plant sure has a lot of future potential.

Help me out here as I have never understood this. What does the number of blooms have to do with a flower quality award? Is there part of the score that is based on number of flowers? I have heard this before but have never understood it.

e-spice
 

littlefrog

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e-spice said:
Help me out here as I have never understood this. What does the number of blooms have to do with a flower quality award? Is there part of the score that is based on number of flowers? I have heard this before but have never understood it.

e-spice

Actually there are points allocated to different categories (size, form and color of individual parts, habit and arrangement of inflorescence, and floriferousness, among others). Those all add up to 100. We have ... oh heck, I don't have the sheet in front of me, but 7 or 8 different 'scales' to use for different types of orchids, plus the 'general' scale for things that don't fit the other ones. For example, we want to give more weight to the petals of a phalaenopsis than to the petals of a masdevallia (which are often insignificant or obscured), so different numbers of points are allocated for that particular feature to the two different types of orchid. We don't have to use any particular scale, and the allocations are merely advisory. I think most judges follow them pretty religiously, but there is nothing to prevent a certified judge from just writing down a number (79 for example) without any breakdowns.

Certain types of orchids are allocated points for floriferousness. In fact, most are. Paphs, curiously, are not, as historically most of the paphs were single flowered. We often judge multifloral paphs (and phrags) on the 'general' scale, since we want to take floriferousness into account. Floriferousness is important in plants that are capable of carrying multiple flowers, so we need to reward (or penalize) appropriately. We can go into the concept of 'fatal flaws' some other time, but in my mind there are certain things that are inexcusable, regardless of other factors. Single flowers in multifloral paphs or phrags is one. Similarly, I would have serious difficulty awarding a single flowered masdevallia. Even though most are single flower per inflorescence, I know that well grown plants can have three, four, or lots more flowers per plant, and I really want to see that they are all uniform.

I can't remember the points allocated to floriferousness on the general scale (10, I think). So, assuming the plant is being scored (I didn't nominate it, but somebody did and now we all score it) and I'm following along with the scale, I would award a single flowered Phrag MDC one or perhaps 2 points in that category. Another judge might give 5 points. I doubt anybody would go much higher than that if they are paying attention. It is really hard to give full points in any other category, so assuming that the single flower outstanding in all other respect (80% of the other points, AM quality), deduct 8 for floriferousness, we are at 72 points, or no award. I'd have to think the plant was worth a high AM (85 pts or better) just to get to a decent HCC. And, frankly, if the flower was that nice I wouldn't want to penalize it with the low award. Hence, I wouldn't nominate it for scoring and would suggest the grower bring it back on a subsequent bloom.

Now... This is just my internal logic, with some generous assumptions. Not every train of thought arrives at the same station (most of mine don't even leave on time).
 

slippertalker

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NYEric said:
That's the problem w/ subjective judging, roundness and other factors are variable.

There seems to be a lack of understanding generally regarding the judging procedure and scoring system. To become a judge you are in constant training, and it takes roughly 7 years to become fully accredited. Training varies from region to region, but the purpose is to expose the judges to as much information as possible regarding species and hybrids within many genera.

The scoring process itself takes a fair amount of practice, and experience viewing many plants in the past along with comparing prior awards is paramount. Just because you like a flower or think that it's pretty doesn't mean that it's award quality. Items like form, color, size, arrangement, number of flowers and the stem all contribute towards the award. A lack in one area can take down the score drastically.

I would suggest that many should attend AOS judging to learn that the process is not as nebulous as some suggest. Many centers are quite willing to invite the public to join the judging teams as observers, and it's a great way to learn.
 

littlefrog

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slippertalker said:
I would suggest that many should attend AOS judging to learn that the process is not as nebulous as some suggest. Many centers are quite willing to invite the public to join the judging teams as observers, and it's a great way to learn.

Yes, I agree. Our center (Great Lakes) is very welcoming of observers, and we really appreciate people taking the time and expressing interest in the process. It has been that way pretty much everywhere I've ever judged. If you are anywhere near Ann Arbor on the third Saturday of the month, stop on by. Bring a plant, if you like. If you feel shy, contact me first, I'll meet you at the door with a cup of coffee and a donut. We do this to have fun, it isn't scary at all.

Another option is to attend a judging session at an orchid show. Your local show is a great place to start. It is a slightly different environment than the monthly judging, but well worth your time. As an added advantage, the show is near your home and you were going to be there anyway, right? Right? Come on people, you know you want to support your local orchid show.
 

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